The World Macadamia Organisation (WMO), an independent not-for-profit organization aimed to bring awareness of the benefits of the nut to manufacturers and consumers alike, is aligned with the recently published study by the Journal of Nutritional Science indicating that macadamia nuts lower cholesterol and do not lead to weight gain.
“As our society becomes more aware of ingredients in foods and the benefits to a healthy diet, it is exciting to reconfirm through this study that macadamias are a great source of nutrition for those practicing weight-loss diets and those who are not,” said Jillian Laing, chief executive officer of WMO.
The study consisted of two randomly assigned groups between the ages of 40 to 75 years old. The criteria included a body mass index between 25 and 39, a waist circumference greater than 102 cm for men and 89 cm for women with one additional cardiometabolic risk factor.
The 16-week observation had participants consume macadamia nuts daily. One group ate the nuts for 8 weeks and returned to their normal diet for the other eight weeks. The other group reversed it from consuming a normal diet to eating macadamias on the 2nd half of the study.
Macadamia nuts are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs), omega-7, and omega-9 which is known to reduce inflammation, improve heart function through lowering of ‘bad cholesterol’ levels, and support overall wellness. The ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 (6:1) found in macadamias provides a much better balance of the two essential fats than common seed and vegetable oils.
Established in 2021, WMO’s current membership includes many of the major macadamia growing countries such as South Africa, Australia, Kenya, Guatemala, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe.
“This study validated years of studies showing an array of benefits when consuming macadamias,” said Denise Canellos, MS, CNS. “We are hopeful that as consumers expand their food selection, they include macadamias into their daily diet.”
According to Grand View Research, the global macadamia nut markets size is valued at $1.31 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 10.7% from 2021 to 2028.
In 2020, global macadamia production was at 240,000 tonnes (Nut in Shell) and by 2025, it is expected to double to around 480,000 tonnes. By 2030, productions are expected to exceed 600,000 tonnes.
The research was coordinated by the International Nut and Dried Fruit Council (INC) with the support of the INC World Forum for Nutrition Research and Dissemination.